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The Jewish Report Editorial

Contradictory world of Israel haters

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I woke up in the early hours of the morning before this newspaper was put to bed wracking my brain for an inspiring front-page story with a happy ending. I also wanted to run a front-page story that would take us away from antisemitism and Israel hatred because, frankly, it’s unpleasant and depressing.

We did have a couple of leads that appeared to have nothing to do with either – and they had happy endings – but in the end, they didn’t work out.

And the truth is that we cannot wish away antisemitism and Israel hatred.

However, having said that, I have to say that despite the ugliness of our haters and the things they say about us, I found myself vaguely amused at these angry people protesting outside aliya expos.

Let’s face it, aliya expos are about helping Jews to emigrate. I know it’s to Israel – and our haters don’t like Israel – but they make it so clear they don’t want us around either. So, surely they should be out celebrating that some Jews are interested in leaving the country! They should be encouraging aliya expos, because that means more Jews may leave South Africa. As I understand it, they would be very happy for us to take our skills, intelligence, and know-how elsewhere.

Surely, it would make them happy that these Zionists, whom they claim to despise, are taking their ideas, innovation, and businesses and restarting in Israel? Surely, they would be grateful if Jews closed the organisations that raise funds to help the more needy in South Africa, and launched elsewhere?

So, I suggest that they stop protesting against aliya expos, and help put them together. It would be the answer to their problems. They would no longer have a need to protest against everything we do or say. Then, more of the Zionists they so love to hate would be offshore, and they could heave a sigh of relief.

Perhaps our haters didn’t get the memo about what aliya means? But surely they understand what a protest is? Then why take little children along when they’re going to get violent, harass people, and damage vehicles? Seriously, what are they trying to teach their children? That violence pays and hatred is a solution to anti-Israel problems? It’s really sad, I have to say. We should all be protecting our little ones from hatred where possible, not thrusting them onto the frontline.

I understand that Gazan children don’t have that luxury, nor did Israeli children on 7 October, or when they repeatedly have to run from missiles. But our South African children – Jewish, Muslim, Christian, or any religious persuasion – really don’t need to see adults misbehaving for any reason. Or so I believe. But then, I accept that our haters may not agree with me because we probably don’t agree on a lot, not least of all supporting a Jewish state.

What I realise, though, is that truth isn’t a strong point for our haters, because they seem to take up the age-old adage of “never let the truth get in the way of a good story”. And I thought that was specific to bad journalists!

Consider this: these extremists are now calling on the police, the justice ministry, and the National Prosecuting Authority to investigate the Israel Centre, the South African Zionist Federation, South African Jewish Board of Deputies, and so on. I’m not quite sure what they hope to achieve because there’s nothing secretive about any of these organisations. What you see is what you get. I can vouch for that because we deal with them a lot. But then, no matter how many years I’ve been a journalist, because I’m a Jew and I believe in a Jewish state, they may not trust me.

What exactly do they think they would find by investigating Jewish communal organisations? For the life of me, I cannot imagine. But I’m astonished that they would expect the police, justice department, and prosecuting authority to waste their time and minimal budget on something so ridiculous. Frankly, I would imagine that most people would rather that they fought crime, corruption, criminals, and tried to find ways to avoid these major problems from emerging in the first place.

But, no, our haters are so obsessed with hating us, they would rather these organisations pause in fighting the real problems in the country and focus on us. Seriously!

Then, we look at their call for the arrest of Colonel Golan Vach, a man celebrated for his personal contribution to global humanitarian aid and disaster-relief efforts. As the head of Israel’s National Rescue Unit, he has saved countless lives all over the world, including after the earthquake in Turkey last year, for which he was personally acknowledged by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

He has led rescue missions to Haiti, Brazil, the Philippines, and Mexico, among other countries where there was a dire need. He’s an international hero, yet our haters want him behind bars because they insist that he was in South Africa to recruit young boys as soldiers. This is so bizarre and ridiculous, it would be amusing if our haters didn’t push it out on social and general media and get thousands to believe it.

They lambast Vach because he killed two Palestinians, but these two terrorists were trying to kill him and so he defended himself, killing them. What exactly was Vach supposed to do? Let them kill him? I don’t believe so.

So, while what they are saying is amusing, and would otherwise be comical, unfortunately it’s not because their fiction becomes fact when they tell others about it. Because much like people believing the lies Hamas sprouts, they are happy to believe those who hate us even if there’s no reality to what they are saying.

Having said all of that, at the SA Jewish Report, we’ll continue to search for stories with happy endings for you.

Shabbat Shalom!

Peta Krost


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